Known for his smooth soul samples and steady drums, DJ Premier either worked with or influenced a majority of the more prominent and most respected names in Hip Hop. As Gang Starr, DJ Premier and Guru put out six studio albums; No More Mr. Nice Guy, Step in Arena, Daily Operation, Hard to Earn, Moment of Truth, and The Ownerz. Although the group never got any official critical acclaim or win any music awards, their influence can be heard almost anywhere Hip Hop is found.
DJ Premier is responsible for some of the most critically acclaimed tracks throughout Hip Hop history. In honor of his born day, below are some of his most popular songs that helped to define his career as a beat maker.
in recognition of his sixth studio album The Blueprint, Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter’s The Blueprint album has been added to the National Recording Registry.
To school you to the importance of the commemoration, according to the national Recording Registry, songs and records are archived that are “culturally, historically, or aesthetically important, and/or inform or reflect life in the United States.”
Other Hip Hop songs that have been registered include Grandmaster Flash and The Furious Five’s “The Message”, 2Pac’s “Dear Mama” and Aretha Franklin’s “Respect”.
Records by Nina Simone and Curtis Mayfield were also recognized alongside The Blueprint.
On this date in 2002, Hip Hop billionaire and troubled R&B legend R. Kelly released their highly anticipated joint album Best Of Both Worlds on the Roc-A-Fella/Def Jam imprint.
One of the most controversial albums and tours in the history of Hip Hop, Best Of Both Worlds fused Hip Hop and the already present element of R&B from two of the most prolific artists of the time. Kells and Hov created a synergy that could only be wrapped in a package with artistry from these two notable entertainers. Songs like “Shake Your Body” featuring Lil’ Kim, “Get This Money” and “Somebody’s Girl” embodied the concept of this project. The title track, in which Jay proclaims, “A combination of Pappy Mason and Larry Davis/ Martin and Malcolm, this is bigger than the album..” explained in suttle detqil the importance of this collabo project for the fans as well as the two artists.
Nevermind the fact that Jay had just completed his probation for the stabbing of former friend and associate Lance “Un” Rivera and Kells was facing then his first child sex case. Forget the fact that Jay’s longtime confidant pepper-sprayed Kelly in Madison Square Garden backstage, prompting the singer to drop out of the tour. It safe to say that the anticipation of the album was just as exciting as the drama that surrounded the album and the tour.
Salute to Jay and R. Kelly for delivering suc an unforgettable piece of Hip Hop history!
Rapper Nelly recently released a statement to The Source about his ongoing sexual assault case in the United Kingdom and how he believes the lawyers for the accuser is is “doing a severe disservice to women and true victims that need a safe system to report assaults against them.”
“It is time for me to personally speak up against this! I have remained quiet and haven’t said anything or done anything other than fully cooperate on every level of the investigation to allow law enforcement to do whatever they need to get to the bottom of these accusations.
In spite of my complete cooperation, this same lawyer in both cases against me, is claiming the police in two different countries ‘won’t help her clients,’ ‘are incompetent’ and is consistently painting a picture that I am ‘bullying the police’ in two different countries to not do their job.
Not only is this attorney continuously damaging my reputation to forge ahead with civil suits to get money, she is doing a severe disservice to women and true victims that need a safe system to report assaults against them with claims like ‘police won’t help’ and ‘botched the case.’
‘Clients are being treated like suspects by the police’ leaving real victims to feel like reporting would be of no help. I would also advise my own two daughters to report and fully cooperate with authorities no matter what the circumstances are and how difficult the process may become if you are truly a victim of such a heinous crime.
Also, by running to the media for her own gain, she is creating the misconception that true victims would be under intense scrutiny and bullied by the police intended to help and protect true victims.”
28 years ago, Eazy muthaf**kin’ E made his debut on the White House lawn.
While other rappers of the time were totally against President George Bush and his staunch law and order policies, Eazy-E, along with his manager Jerry Heller, spent $1250 a plate to attend the Republicans Inner Circle dinner.
This private, members-only dinner may have cost Eazy a whopping $2500 for two plates, but that type of publicity couldn’t be bought. Speculation has it that Eazy and Jerry’s attendance at the White House during the Bush administration kept the FBI off of N.W.A’s backs after the controversy over their “Fuck The Police” single.
S/O to @onthisdateinhiphop for the dopest library on the web!
On this day in 1997, the Hip Hop community as well as bed-Stuy, Brooklyn bid farewell to one of its favorite sons and an unforgettable farewell it was.
Nine days following the shooting death of one of Hip Hop’s most celebrated lyricists, Fulton Street and St. James Place in the heart of Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn was the site of the legendary celebration of life for Brooklyn’s own Christopher Wallace aka Biggie Smalls. Celebrities such as Mary J. Blige, Lil’ Kim, Ma$e, DJ Premier and others came out to remember the fallen King Of new York, but the most vivid memory was how Bed-Stuy came out to show love for Biggie.
Thousands gathered in the streets of Brooklyn to say one last goodbye to B.I.G…Brooklyn style.
Compton-bred rapper YG — “Keenon Daequan Ray muthafuckin’ Jackson” as his mom eloquently refers to him on the intro to the album we’re about to talk about — is one of the leaders in today’s roster of young Hip-Hop kings, right there along with the likes of Kendrick Lamar, J. Cole, Meek Mill and the immensely-missed Mac Miller. While Cole is a representative of the south by way of Fayetteville, North Carolina, Meek a proud representation of Philly through and through, Mac giving Pittsburgh its well-deserved props and K. Dot telling the story of living in Compton from a deeply introspective and oftentimes poetic point of view, YG found a way to rep the West Coast from its original G-funk gangsta rap roots from the very beginning of his career.
His platinum-selling debut album, My Krazy Life, turns five years old today (March 18), and is officially available as a 2LP black vinyl by way of Urban Legends. It’s one of those records that will look good plastered on your wall of other preserved rap records, or for a few good spins if you actually own a player to scratch it on. Either way, there’s no arguing that My Krazy Life is a modern day classic. Let us break down why real quick.
Before you go cop the record and add it to your collection, read on to see why YG’s My Krazy Life was so important to the climate of Hip-Hop in 2014 and how it’s shaped the rap game up to this day:
The Album Topped Billboard’s R&B/Hip-Hop Albums & Rap Albums Charts, While Also Debuting at #2 on the Billboard 200
The week of April 5, 2014, My Krazy Life was held out from the top spot by one astronomical album: the soundtrack for Disney’s Frozen. Granted, nobody was stopping the Frozen train, so we definitely give YG cred where it’s due. However, he was able to top the US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart and the Top Rap Albums, the latter where it finished at #9 on the year-end list. Overall, it was one of the most successful rap releases of 2014.
The Guest Features Were Phenomenal
Not only was he able to get rap vet Jeezy on the hit lead single, as well as Lil Wayne on the remix, YG also found a way to use My Krazy Life as an opportunity to prove that there was definitely a unity within his rap class. ScHoolboy Q and Jay Rock on “I Just Wanna Party,” Tory Lanez on “Me & My Bitch,” Nicki Minaj on the aforementioned lead single remix as well, Drake on “Who Do You Love?” and Kendrick Lamar on the classic deep cut “Really Be (Smokin N Drinkin)” were all examples of that. While friendly competition is always in the atmosphere, these MCs supported and rocked with each other heavy.
The Album Helped Put DJ Mustard on the Map
Granted, DJ Mustard had been producing hits as far back as 2011 with Tyga’s top 10 banger “Rack City,” but his working relationship with YG can’t be compared to any rap/producer duo in the game. While they went through a brief beef that has thankfully been squashed, there’s no denying the classic songs they were able to create as a unit on My Krazy Life. We saw them recreate the magic recently on “Big Bank” off last year’s Stay Dangerous, proving that the YG/Mustard union is a much-needed force in Hip-Hop for the majority of us that love a good G-Funk-laced club banger.
My Krazy Life Proved YG Could Represent the West Coast As a Solo Force
Having a tight rap crew to fall back on definitely helps elevate you up the ranks in Hip-Hop, which is why we give YG even more cred for being able to navigate up the charts dolo. While his contemporaries had groups that range from TDE and A$AP Mo to Dreamville and even Young Money, YG held things down on his own under his 4Hunnid imprint, which operates as a record label and fashion brand alike. The leader of his own pack, for sure.
The Universal Praise of “My Nigga”
As controversial as the title is, nobody can deny the takeover of the rap game that “My Nigga” had on Hip-Hop and music in general. A certified quadruple platinum hit, the song also referred to as “My Hitta” made it to the top 20 on the Billboard Hot 100 (#19 peak position) and garnered YG two BET Hip Hop Awards, including “Best Collabo, Duo or Group” alongside Jeezy and Rich Homie Quan plus recognition for the coveted “Track of the Year” that was awarded to DJ Mustard for production. Even today, drop that track and watch the room go crazy.
Happy five years to My Krazy Life by YG! Shop the new 2LP vinyl release right now over on Urban Legends, and let us know your favorite tracks off the project over on our Facebook and Twitter.
On this date 49 years ago, Hip Hop’s first matriarch was born in Newark, New Jersey.
Born Dana Owens, Queen Latifah grew from an affluent and promising basketball player from Irvington, New Jersey into one of the most iconic figures in the world’s most transformative sub-culture known as Hip Hop. Whether it’s hitting the booth over the pas three decades, delivering solid albums for her fans or wowing viewers on the silver screen in some of her legendary roles like “Cleo” in Set It Off or “Mama” in her award-winning role in Chicago, the Queen of the legendary Flavor Unit is undoubtedly one of the most prolific figures and illustrious personalities not only in Hip Hop, but global pop culture in general.
Peace to Latifah on her born daym but it wouldn’t be right unless we took it back to where it all started.
On this date in 1972, Sean Price, the honorary Boot Camp general, was born in Brooklyn, New York and went on to become one of NYC’s most prolific MCs to date.
Tragically, Price, who is known affectionately to his fans as “Ruck” of Heltah Skeltah, died in his sleep on August 8, 2015 at the age of 43. Even though he is no longer here in the physical form, Ruck continues to live on through his family and his music, with another posthumous album, Imperius Rex courtesy of the Boot Camp Clik and the Duck Down family.
During the 2000s, Price made a name for himself as a heavyweight in the underground Hip Hop community. His first solo album, Monkey Barz, was released in 2005 and received critical acclaim, peaking at #70 on the Billboard Hip Hop chart. To this day, the album is held in ridiculously high esteem among commercial and independent artists and after that he went on to release two more albums, Jesus Price Supastar and Mic Tyson, both of which made debuts on the Billboard 200 chart.
Sean Price passed away in his sleep on August 8, 2015 and the details surrounding the death are still unknown.
In honor of his born day, here are a couple of his most popular videos to help educate those who aren’t aware of his greatness.
On this date in 1959, William Jonathan Drayton, better known to the world as Flavor Flav, was born in NYC. Flav is the hypeman of the iconic, Rock N’ Roll Hall Of Fame Hip Hop group Public Enemy.
Growing up on Freeport, Long Island is where A young Flavor developed his love for music, teaching himself to play the piano, drums, and guitar on his own. It was also in Long Island where a young adult Flav met Chuck Ridenhour, who later became known as Chuck D, the front man of Public Enemy. The two linked at Adelphi University on the Island, where the two attended college and learned about each other’s love for Hip Hop.
As one of the founding members of PE, Flav was there in 1984 when the song “Public Enemy #1” was recorded; the first known track by the group. In 1986, the crew signed with Rick Rubin on Def Jam, however, Rubin did not initially want to sign Flav because he didn’t understand his role in the group.
Ever since PE’s debut album Yo! Bum Rush The Show, Flav was the hype jester to the ultra serious, politically charged group which now included Chuck D, Terminator X, and a security force known as the S1Ws. Songs such as “Fight The Power”, “911 Is A Joke”, and “I Can’t Do Nothin’ For Ya Man” featured the comedic darts of Flav, which brought a balance to PE.
Drugs and domestic issues hindered Flav for a short while during his career, however, he bounced back into the public eye as a reality show pioneer, with shows like Surreal Life and The Flavor Of Love breaking ground in reality TV.
Big ups to Flav on his born day and TheSource.com wishes the Flavor Man many more!